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Exploring art by and about people of African descent, primarily through the lens of books, magazines and catalogs, Culture Type features original research and reporting and shares invaluable interestingness culled from the published record on black art.

Year in Black Art
The Year Ahead in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2019

The Year Ahead in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2019

  THE YEAR AHEAD begins and ends with major traveling exhibitions, each presenting nearly a century of works by African American artists. The January debut of “Black Refractions: Highlights From the Studio Museum in Harlem” at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco kicks off a tour of six venues. Scheduled for seven...
Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2018

Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2018

IN MANY WAYS, 2018 was a watershed year for black artists. Overdue recognition of art by African American artists and black artists from throughout the world, continued to grow among collectors, curators, critics, scholars, and gallery owners. There were many indicators of the ever-expanding institutional and market interest. European attention on African American artists rose....
Culture Type Picks: 18 Best Black Art Books of 2018

Culture Type Picks: 18 Best Black Art Books of 2018

The best illustrated black art books of 2018. | Photo by Victoria L. Valentine   THE INCREASED INTEREST among some museums in mounting exhibitions featuring the work of African American artists has translated into a growing number of catalogs published to document them, which is wonderful. Many of those catalogs made Culture Type’s 2018 list...
Next: 28 Art Curators to Watch Who Took on New Appointments in 2018

Next: 28 Art Curators to Watch Who Took on New Appointments in 2018

  A SELECT GROUP OF BLACK CURATORS is making significant contributions to the museum field—collaborating with artists, organizing important exhibitions, shaping collections and programming, and taking advantage of opportunities to lend their expertise beyond their institutions. Their representation is growing, slowly, but their presence and achievements remain rare. On the American museum front, among curators,...
On the Horizon in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2018

On the Horizon in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2018

THE YEAR AHEAD MARKS KEY HISTORIC MILESTONES. Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King Jr., was assassinated on April 4, 1968 in Memphis, Tenn. King’s legacy will be honored this year through many programs and events. A new exhibition at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture examines the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign,...
Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2017

Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2017

POLITICS PAST AND PRESENT coursed through the art world in 2017. Issues of censorship and debates around who has the right to depict black bodies came to the fore. The biggest news stories, from White House machinations, gun violence, and immigration to the fate of Confederate monuments, racial division, and sexual harassment and assault revelations,...
Representation: 9 Artists to Watch Who Joined New Galleries in 2017

Representation: 9 Artists to Watch Who Joined New Galleries in 2017

AT ANY STAGE of an artist’s career, partnership with the right gallery can be transformative. New gallery representation offers the opportunity to better communicate the focus of an artist’s practice; expose their work to a broader audience of collectors, curators, and critics; and encourage and support exhibitions, projects, and even a new creative direction. In...
Next: 23 Art Curators to Watch Who Took on New Appointments in 2017

Next: 23 Art Curators to Watch Who Took on New Appointments in 2017

THE ART, EXHIBITIONS, AND PROGRAMMING featured in museums and cultural institutions are largely shaped, guided and decided upon by curators, an elite group lacking racial and ethnic diversity. A recent survey from the Mellon Foundation found that representation for black curators (and conservators, educators and leaders) in the museum sector is dismal—just 4 percent. To...
A Look Back: For 8 Years, President Obama Touted Merits of Art for Change

A Look Back: For 8 Years, President Obama Touted Merits of Art for Change

  President Obama sits for first-ever 3D Presidential portrait, which was produced by the Smithsonian Institution, June 9, 2014. | Official White House Photo by Pete Souza   This post has been updated with links to the Obama White House archive site.   FROM THE MOMENT President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama entered the...
New Year, New Art: What to Look Forward to in 2017

New Year, New Art: What to Look Forward to in 2017

IN THE COMING YEAR, 20 biennials and triennials are happening around the world. Documenta 14 is opening in Athens, Greece, and Kassel, Germany; the Whitney Biennial and Performa 17 are occurring in New York; and New Orleans is hosting Prospect.4. Meanwhile, artists are diversifying their practices and reaping the benefits of critical recognition. Mark Bradford...
Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2016

Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2016

FROM THE MOMENT Kerry James Marshall’s 35-year survey exhibition opened at MCA Chicago this spring, the artist has been praised with honors, his work has been lauded in the media, and his message has resonated. His years-long mantra, that in order to push the Western canon of art history in a more diverse and representational...
Next: 18 Curators & Cultural Leaders to Watch Who Joined New Institutions in 2016

Next: 18 Curators & Cultural Leaders to Watch Who Joined New Institutions in 2016

MANY CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS have finally come around to realizing that it is imperative that their boards, staff and programming reflect the communities they serve. Putting such measures into practice is another matter. A recent Mellon Foundation survey conducted with the Association of Art Museum Directors and the American Alliance of Museums found most museum staffs...
Cover Stars: The 24 Best Art Magazine Covers of 2016

Cover Stars: The 24 Best Art Magazine Covers of 2016

  NOTHING BEATS LEAFING through the pages of a visually inspiring print publication, except perhaps that initial moment of spotting a compelling magazine cover on the newsstand or newly delivered to your mailbox. Over the past year, art magazines have selected winning cover images paying tribute to painter Kerry James Marshall, marking the historic opening...
Representation: 10 African American Artists to Watch Who Joined New Galleries in 2016

Representation: 10 African American Artists to Watch Who Joined New Galleries in 2016

AT EVERY STAGE IN AN ARTIST’S CAREER, joining a new gallery can offer new opportunities and possibilities. Over the past year, emerging artists, mid-career artists, and well-established artists who have been practicing for half a century, joined the rosters of major galleries. For an artist, the right partnership can sharpen business outcomes and help bolster...